Nigeria’s junior international Tom Dele-Bahiru shone like a million stars in Reading’s 3-1 victory over Peterborough on Tuesday.
The former Under 20 and 23 ace netted a double to hand Reading and their wonderful day.
In a drab first half, Reading were fortunate not to go behind and were grateful to rookie goalkeeper Luke Southwood for making stunning saves to deny Siriki Dembele and Ollie Norburn.
Reading opened up a 2-0 lead midway through the second half with goals from John Swift and Dele-Bashiru in the space of three minutes.
Peterborough halved the gap through a Nathan Thompson header but Dele-Bashiru pounced again with two minutes remaining to announce Reading’s supremacy in the encounter.
Both clubs had matching poor records going into the match, with only one win in seven league and cup outings this term – including five defeats.
Reading’s problems have been compounded by nine first-team players missing due to injuries, the latest being number-one goalkeeper Rafael.
The Brazilian sustained a broken hand when reportedly punching a dressing-room tactics board in frustration after the 3-3 home draw with QPR on Saturday – and could be out for up to two months.
Southwood, a 23-year-old former England youth international, replaced Rafael for only his second league appearance for the club.
Peterborough, who lost 6-2 at Sheffield United on Saturday, started the better, but, when Jonson Clarke-Harris tried his luck from a free-kick, the defensive wall held firm. Recall that Dele-Bashiru was part of Nigeria’s U-20 squad to the 2019 FIFA U-20 World cup in Poland scoring the second goal in Nigeria’s 4-0 defeat of Qatar in the opener.